Funny Money

By Mark Singer

From esteemed New Yorker author Mark Singer comes this cautionary story of the Penn sq. financial institution, the oil and fuel dealer in an Oklahoma urban shopping center whose cave in in 1982 staggered America’s banking undefined. Recounting the full fabulous tale and its colourful characters, Singer makes brilliantly (and hilariously) transparent what truly occurred and why it needed to occur in boom-time Oklahoma. Nowhere else did funds circulation in really an analogous spontaneous type. “[A] story of fantastic verve” (New York Times), humorous funds involves existence via Singer's brilliant prose and keeps to resonate in present day tradition of company corruption.

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Its traders, notwithstanding, earned stocks in a wide block of undeveloped Anadarko rentals. sooner than lengthy, Makaroff died and Kennedy acquired the Anadarko mineral pursuits in his property. With what now amounted to a list of a couple of hundred thousand acres, GHK used to be born—a partnership that might levitate for years on Kennedy's sound credits, Glover's impeccable manners and lethal ability as a pigeon-stalker, and, particularly, Hefner's evangelism within the identify of the deep Anadarko Basin. Robert A. Hefner III was once a well suited examine in self-study, a completely discovered personality. In Oklahoma, in the event you have been going to try convinced stunts it helped tremendously to be a Hefner—a genus that, in the neighborhood, handed for royalty. Hefner's grandfather, the unique Robert A. Hefner, regularly introduced himself to the appropriate position on the correct time: to Beaumont, Texas, in 1903, at the heels of the blowout of the Spindletop good, which ignited the East Texas oil bonanza; to Ardmore, Oklahoma, quickly after statehood, the place he confirmed an oil-and-gas legislations perform that benefited from the hole of the good Healdton box; to Oklahoma urban within the past due twenties, only a yr sooner than the Oklahoma urban No. 1 got here in. A biography of the relations founder, titled The Judge—he served a time period as a justice of the Oklahoma preferrred court docket, although his acquaintances had known as him "Judge" lengthy prior to he turned one—was issued a few years in the past by means of the Oklahoma history organization, that's housed this present day within the Hefner kin manse, in Oklahoma urban. in keeping with this booklet, pass judgement on Hefner narrowly escaped penury early in his felony profession whilst, in reckless self-sacrifice, he undertook a contingent-fee case on behalf of 4 Choctaw households who felt they'd been disadvantaged in their tribal land allotments; even though the pass judgement on gained the case, his consumers grew to become out to be ingrates. He bounced again and went directly to write the seminal country estate legislation touching on the sale of minerals. studying The pass judgement on, one learns that by the point the protagonist started his perfect courtroom time period, in 1927, he owned virtually fifty thousand acres of floor and minerals, regularly in southern Oklahoma. After retiring from the court docket, he served phrases as mayor of Oklahoma urban and greater than dabbled within the legislation, the oil enterprise, and genuine property. alongside the best way, he made just one dumb mistake. That occurred in 1934, whilst he offered to an oil operator from manhattan urban the "deep" rights to all his minerals in Carter County. every little thing less than 4 thousand toes he gave up for ten cash an acre. Drilling lower than 4 thousand ft in southern Oklahoma used to be unthinkable as the pass judgement on had now not but lived lengthy sufficient to understand greater. His biographer notes that the Hefner corporation, which he based, by no means went outdoor its personal treasury to come back up with working capital. while the eldest of the Judge's kids, Robert Jr. , semi-retired many years in the past, he gave a newspaper interview that integrated this citation: "There is something i am happy with. i have not borrowed one cent and not had a promoted greenback in my enterprise.

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